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Pentagon redirects $2.2B in border wall spending to military projects

A section of the U.S. - Mexico border fence is seen at International Friendship Park in Imperial Beach, Calif., on June 10, 2019. On Friday, the Defense Department said funds the Trump administration allocated for building the border wall will be redirected to other military projects. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI
A section of the U.S. - Mexico border fence is seen at International Friendship Park in Imperial Beach, Calif., on June 10, 2019. On Friday, the Defense Department said funds the Trump administration allocated for building the border wall will be redirected to other military projects. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

June 11 (UPI) -- The Biden administration on Friday announced plans to redirect $2.2 billion in funds previously set aside for border wall construction to pay for dozens of Defense Department projects.

The announcement comes nearly six months after President Joe Biden signed an executive order calling for border wall construction to halt.

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The Pentagon said the money will go toward 66 military projects in 11 states, three territories and 16 countries. Among them is a $79 million project to overhaul an elementary school in Germany for U.S. military children, a $25 million radio battalion project in North Carolina, a $25 million upgrade to equipment and personnel at Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida, and $10 million for a missile field expansion at Fort Greely in Alaska.

Former President Donald Trump made construction of the border wall a priority of his presidential campaign and four years in office. He declared the emergency in February 2019 in order to divert $600 million from the Treasury Department and $6.1 billion from the Defense Department to the Department of Homeland Security for border wall construction.

Overall, the Trump administration built approximately 450 miles of the wall -- most of which was the reinforcement or replacement of existing barriers -- along the 1,954-mile southern border.

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